Syracuse, NY – July 26, 2023 – Syracuse University, known for producing exceptional graduates across various fields, recently featured a remarkable piece showcasing the accomplishments of its alumni who chose to stay in the Syracuse area. Among the notable success stories highlighted in this feature, one name stood out: Ryan Novak, the owner of the renowned Chocolate Pizza Company, and his wife, Christie. Both 2011 graduates of Syracuse University, they have transformed the small-town chocolate shop into an emerging national chocolate gifts brand while remaining committed to their roots in Marcellus, NY, a mere 15 minutes away from the university. You can read the article here.

Ryan Novak’s journey as an entrepreneur began during his senior year at Syracuse University’s Whitman School of Management, where he pursued a major in Entrepreneurship. While many students would be consumed by thoughts of post-graduation plans, Ryan had a different vision. In 2010, he acquired the Chocolate Pizza Company, a local chocolatier in Marcellus, and decided to invest his energy in growing the business in his hometown.

chocolate maker Ryan Novak pizza company

The Chocolate Pizza Company was far from its current grandeur when Ryan first took the reins. What once was a quaint little chocolate shop has now blossomed into a sprawling 15,000 square foot production and retail facility. The transformation is a testament to Ryan’s dedication and passion for his craft. He envisioned not just a chocolate company but a brand that would be cherished nationwide for its quality and creativity.

Ryan and Christie Novak’s commitment to Syracuse and the surrounding community played a significant role in their success. They could have moved their operations to a bigger city or a more prominent location, but they chose to stay. In doing so, they not only revitalized the local economy but also became influential community role models. They have shown that with hard work, determination, and a strong belief in one’s roots, it is possible to build a thriving business in any community.

The Chocolate Pizza Company’s success is a reflection of the values and skills instilled in Ryan during his time at Syracuse University. The university’s robust Entrepreneurship program, coupled with a nurturing environment, provided him with the tools to turn his dreams into reality. Ryan’s story serves as an inspiration to current students, demonstrating that their aspirations can bear fruit, not just for themselves but for the community they choose to call home.

Since its inception, the Chocolate Pizza Company has become synonymous with unique and delicious gourmet chocolate gifts like their famous Chocolate Pizza and Peanut Butter Wings. Their mouthwatering creations have captivated taste buds far and wide, attracting customers from across the country. What started as a local chocolate shop has now transformed into a prominent brand, proudly carrying the Syracuse University spirit wherever its products reach.

candy topped chocolate pizza and peanut butter wings

In a recent interview with Rob Enslin, the author of the Syracuse University article, Ryan Novak shared his gratitude for the education and support he received during his time at the university. He expressed how his professors’ mentorship and the university’s resources played a pivotal role in shaping his entrepreneurial acumen. Ryan’s journey from a student to a successful business owner exemplifies the potential that lies within each Syracuse University graduate.

Syracuse University’s decision to showcase success stories like Ryan and Christie Novak’s underscores their commitment to celebrating the achievements of their alumni. By highlighting entrepreneurs and leaders who have remained in the Syracuse area, the university aims to foster a sense of pride and encouragement within the community, inspiring current students and graduates to consider staying and contributing to the region’s growth.

In conclusion, the article published by Syracuse University on July 26, 2023, serves as a testament to the achievements of its alumni who have chosen to remain in the Syracuse area. Ryan and Christie Novak’s success story with the Chocolate Pizza Company stands out as a shining example of how dedication, innovation, and a commitment to one’s roots can lead to remarkable achievements. Their journey from Syracuse University students to thriving entrepreneurs serves as an inspiration to future graduates, illustrating the profound impact they can make on their communities by staying true to their dreams and aspirations.

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